January 11, 2015 Edition

Michelle Fernandez

This is AI generated summarization, which may have errors. For context, always refer to the full article.

  1. ‘Viva il Papa’: Sri Lanka, Philippines to welcome Pope Francis

    Pope Francis will immerse himself in some of Asia’s most fervent Catholicism during a trip to the Philippines and Sri Lanka starting Tuesday, January 13, with millions of devotees set to turn out. The pope’s trip, which begins in Sri Lanka and ends in the Philippines, comes just 5 months after he visited South Korea, signaling the huge importance the Vatican places on Asia and its potential for more followers.

    Read more on Rappler. Also visit the #PopeFrancisPH site.

  2. AirAsia QZ 8501: Tail of plane found, but no black boxes

    The tail of an AirAsia plane that crashed into the Java Sea was lifted to the surface using floating balloons on Saturday, January 10, but apparently without the crucial black box recorders, Indonesian authorities said. But the search took a frustrating twist when authorities realised the pings were likely coming from elsewhere than the tail, and the boxes appeared to be buried deep into the sea floor.

    Read more on Rappler.


  3. Black Nazarene procession brings millions of devotees to Manila’s streets

    On Friday, January 9, millions of devotees took part in the annual “traslacion” or the procession of the image of the Black Nazarene through the streets of Manila, starting from the Quirino Grandstand until it returned back to the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene (also known as the Quiapo Church). The procession officially ended 4 am Saturday, January 10, when the famous religious icon was returned to its place in the church, almost 20 hours later. A man suffered a fatal heart attack, and at least 420 were hurt while joining the procession.

    The biggest religious gathering in the Philippines, the feast brings people from different sectors of society together. Rappler has stories and galleries of this year’s Black Nazarene procession.

  4. Rocket recycling attempt fails, but ‘bodes well for future’

    A first-ever attempt to recycle a rocket by guiding the Falcon 9’s first stage down to a precision landing on an ocean platform failed on Saturday, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said. “Rocket made it to drone spaceport ship but landed hard,” he wrote on Twitter. “Close but no cigar this time. Bodes well for the future tho.” The launch’s primary mission was to send the unmanned Dragon cargo ship to orbit, and that went smoothly after two delays in recent weeks due to rocket problems.

    Read more on Rappler.


  5. New president takes oath, forms ‘unity’ cabinet

    New Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena began assembling a cabinet Saturday on his first day in office, as he looks to deliver on pledges to improve the war-torn nation’s diplomatic standing and implement democratic reforms. Sirisena, who was sworn in Friday evening, January 9, after a shock election victory over veteran strongman Mahinda Rajapakse, was trying to form a “national unity” cabinet that would include members from a cross section of political parties in parliament, an aide said.

    Read more on Rappler.


  6. How rich is the Philippine Catholic Church?

    How much wealth does the Philippine Catholic Church own? It’s a puzzle that not even the Church hierarchy has figured out with certainty. In this two-part investigative report, Rappler delves into the complex and oftentimes opaque world of Church finances in the Philippines.

    Part one discusses the ins and outs of Church finance, how finances vary from diocese to diocese, and transparency in reporting assets and liabilities. The second part discusses how the Church has investments in various industries, where their money is locked up in stocks.

    Quiapo Church image from WikiMedia Commons

  7. Do you still remember ‘Tell The World of His Love’?

    For the Filipino schoolchild weaned on the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit during the ’90s, “Tell The World of His Love” was the definitive anthem of the Catholic faithful. Songwriter Trina Belamide, who composed the song that defined the World Youth Day of 1995, talked to Rappler about the story behind it. Watch her perform the song in full, along with file photos of past papal visits in the Philippines – including John Paul II’s trip to the Philippines exactly 20 years ago on Monday, January 12.

    Watch the video here.

  8. New buzz words in plan to bring PH army to modern times

    There are new buzz words and new targets that observers of the modernization efforts of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) need to know. The plan entails billions of pesos and three “horizons” to bring the country’s armed forces to the present day and prepare it for the future. It includes a short-term plan to jumpstart the purchase of additional jets and ships; a medium-term plan to focus on beefing up areas of concern such as humanitarian response and international security operations; and a third horizon, which goes decades beyond the current administration. The total price tag? P600 billion.

    Rappler has the details.


  9. Singapore hospital sacks Pinoy nurse over Facebook posts

    A Singapore government hospital sacked a Filipino nurse Friday for “offensive” remarks on social media, the latest in a string of foreigners dismissed from their jobs in the city-state for sparking controversy online. Tan Tock Seng Hospital said that the decision to fire Ello Ed Mundsel Bello came after it investigated three of his posts on Facebook and Google Plus that touched upon race and religion. It did not reveal the contents of the posts but described them as “highly irresponsible and offensive to Singapore and religion”.

    Read more on Rappler.


  10. Trip Journal: Follow Pope Francis from the Vatican to Tacloban

    On January 12, Pope Francis boards the papal plane in Rome’s Fiumicino Airport for his 7th foreign trip as head of the Catholic Church – a trip that will bring him to Asia for the second time. From January 13 to 19, the Pope visits Sri Lanka and the Philippines, and Rappler joins the Pope aboard the papal plane through its contributors, Joe Torres and Roy Lagarde. Joe and Roy were accredited to accompany the pontiff for the entire trip.

    Follow their stories as they accompany Pope Francis on this historic journey, through their trip journal on Rappler.


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